telephonetel‧e‧phone1 /ˈteləfəʊn $ -foʊn/ ●●●S1W2 noun1 →the telephone2[countable]TCTTELEPHONE the piece of equipment that you use when you are talking to someone by telephoneSYN phoneThe telephone rang just as I was leaving.She picked up the telephone and dialled a number.I said goodbye and put down the telephone.3 →be on the telephoneCOLLOCATIONS – Meanings 1 & 2verbsa telephone ringsThe telephone rang, but Tom didn’t answer it.answer the telephoneWhen I called the house, Mike answered the telephone.talk on the telephoneHe was talking on the telephone when the doorbell rang.use the telephoneMay I use your telephone?pick up the telephoneAs soon as she got home, she picked up the telephone and dialled his number.put down the telephoneBefore he could respond, she’d put down the telephone.call somebody on the telephoneHer son doesn’t even call her on the telephone.telephone + NOUNa telephone callShe got a telephone call from Joe last night.a telephone conversationWe had a long telephone conversation.a telephone lineThey didn’t even have a telephone line.COMMON ERRORS ► Don’t say ‘get/have a telephone from somebody’. Say get/have a telephone call from somebody.
telephonetelephone2 ●●○ verb [intransitive, transitive]British English formalTCTTELEPHONE to talk to someone by telephoneSYN phone, callSammy telephoned to say that he would be late.I’ll telephone you later.► see thesaurus at phone→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpus
telephone• For details of your nearesttouristofficetelephone 4127.• He would have to telephone around and see if anyone else had any titbits to add to the mystery.• About five o'clock, a woman telephoned Bernstein.• Write or telephone for more information.• He had tried to telephone his wife once, but without success: the line was engaged.• Advertisements are placed in the press, and potential purchasers are invited to telephone or fill in a coupon for further details.• At 4:45 a.m., neighbors telephoned police to report a man firing shots.• I telephoned Sophie and arranged to have dinner with her the following night.• Police take violators to a special detentioncenter and telephone their homes.• Mr Dodd telephoned this morning.• He wanted me to telephone you at once and ask you to come to Danzig.From King Business Dictionarytelephonetel‧e‧phone1 /ˈteləfəʊn-foʊn/ noun [countable]a piece of equipment you use to talk to someone who is in another placeSYNphonetelephonetelephone2 verb [intransitive, transitive]to talk to someone by telephoneSYNcall, phoneShe telephoned to say that he would be late.I’ll telephone you later.→ See Verb tableOrigintelephone1(1800-1900)tele- + Greekphone“sound, voice”